Work could cost lots more

I WRITE again with reference to the internal works at present under consultation by the public for St Andrew’s Church.

A great deal of money from many sources is to be spent, the bulk of which ultimately comes from the public taxes, other than private donations.

It is imperative that the money is used wisely and that the finished work will not harm our 12th century church and also be in keeping with the traditional look that we are used to.

My main concern is that the supporting pillars that support the roof are at present at an angle and the extensive work proposed when the floor is excavated may cause damage.

One of the 20 reports I have studied states “if the floors require lowering below the level of the underlying hardcore..” Meaning that this is a possibility. Then when levelled an underfloor heating system will be laid, covered with concrete.

Later oak chairs with rushwork seats which interlock will replace the pews.

A few of the oak pews will remain in the chancel. The anticipated supplier states that they will last 200 years, however another report says that they will need replacing in 50-70 years at present day prices between £15, 000 and £20,000.

What alternative heating systems have been looked at, there are no costings within these documents as to how much it will be on an annual basis.

The solar panels installed are insufficient to provide the heat when most necessary in the winter. Today I have seen a larger system and on the last three days the readings were zero.

On another day it was 3K, sufficient for a three bar radiator for one hour. There might just be enough energy for the lighting but not for the sound system.

Heating is necessary, fuel is becoming ever more costly and I think a great deal more information is needed.

The roof is 1,100 years old, it has never had continuous heating, which I am told is what they hope to achieve. If the wooden beams dry out they may twist or cause spread and the roof would be in danger.

I have tried to get answers but met with rudeness, lack of transparency.

The structural plan and the current expected costing are not there nor the specifications for contractors to tender for.

The costing in these documents in the church are well out of date and I wonder if more than a million and a half pounds quoted in the press will be enough.

Have they a reserve fund because work of this nature has a habit of costing a great deal more than expected?

In 1868 the congregation numbered 350 at present this figure is approximately 35. I hope they all have deep pockets.

I have attended many weddings, funerals and a concert where Lesley Garrett sang beautifully whilst sitting in the pews without a sound system.

I agree with other objectors there are many venues in Epworth for concerts if the church is inappropriate.

The consultation period finishes on December 1, 2011, write to The Diocesan Registrar, Ms Caroline Mockford, Chatterton House, 2 Low Moor Road, Doddington Road, Lincoln, LN6 3JY.

Mrs Jean Turner



Happy memories

I HAVE very recently been informed of a letter appearing in “The Bells” about the pantomime production of “The Three Musketeers” in The Coronation Hall” Owston Ferry, way back in 1982.

The article written by an old friend Steve Abbott recounts very accurately lots of the zany and hilarious events of the show which was a great success. I am very pleased to be able to claim that I wrote the script for that show. The group made a number of very creditable productions over a number of years which I was very proud to be associated with.

I moved away from the area with work commitments in 1988 and have lost track of many of my old friends from the group, but I will never forget the hilarity we served to the community on many occasions.

I now live in north Leicestershire and my pantomime antics came with me. After a break of some years, the opportunity came to produce a pantomime in 1999 and thereafter every year onwards. The first show was “Robin Hood” in 1999 and in 2000 “The Three Musketeers” ... yes, virtually the same script as back in 1982. It was just as funny!

I now work with a group called “The Harby Harlequins” (see our web site) which have established themselves locally as a very skilled group of actors. We perform pantomimes annually the first week in February (5 shows) and a late summer review.

I still write and direct but have very capable assistance with musical director, choreographer, lighting and sound engineers.

We make thousands of pounds for local charities and we are currently rehearsing “Pinocchio; The Pantomime” for 2012.

It was great to hear Steve’s memories of a very happy period which for me went on to so much more.

Eddie Lilley

Via email.

Charity quiz

WESTWOODSIDE Pond Lights held a quiz night in the Carpenters, Westwoodside, with an aim to raise funds for charity and to bring together all the different groups in the village.

Teams from Westwoodside Pond Lights - two teams, The Parents Association, Haxey and Westwoodside Heritage Society, The Playing Fields Association, The Allotment Association, Carpenters and two teams from residents of the village took part.

The quiz was very successful with the PTA winning the quiz who donated their cash prize to the Air Ambulance and a Children’s cancer charity organised by the school. The raffle prize was donated to the Help the Heroes.

On behalf of Westwoodside Pond Lights may I express our thanks to all the people who took part in the community event

Graham Guest

Vice Chairman

Westwoodside Pond Lights.

Time is Running Out

BY THE time you read this, you will only have a few days left to send your objections to Lincoln, with reasons, to try and save our dear old Parish Church from internal desecration.

Some of us feel that this is a form of vandalism to even think of removing all our Victorian pews and the front rows of our choir stalls and replacing them with modern rush-seated chairs.

Why can’t the pews be renovated and replaced after the floor and heating system have been installed?

Perhaps we could even have some better quality oak pews that have been removed from somewhere like Ripon Cathedral?

What do you feel? You have just one week left to get your letters to:

Ms Caroline F. Mockford

The Diocesan Registrar

Chatterton House

2 Low Moor Road

Doddington Road



Please don’t sit back and do nothing, leaving this important decision to others. If you live in Epworth, St Andrew’s is your Parish Church – even if you are not a regular worshipper here.

Maybe you got married in the church, or had your children christened or confirmed here.

Perhaps you have lost a relative and attended a funeral here and have someone buried in the churchyard. You will all have your own feelings about the atmosphere and ambience of our 12th Century church and you only have until the end of this month to make your views known if we are to avoid over modernisation of our “jewel in the crown” as it has been described.

Mrs EA Fennell

Belton Road


Missed a treat

ALL this talk of “opening up” our church for wider community use just doesn’t make any sense to me.

Over the last 30-40 years I have attended so many events in St Andrew’s Church as I am sure many other parishioners and friends have done.

There have been musical recitals, visiting choirs, flower festivals, craft exhibitions, art displays etc.

Did you go to the excellent WWII Memorabilia Exhibition last year, or the fantastic concert given by Lesley Garrett in September 1996?

All these events have been extremely well attended and most successful.

Strawberry Teas in the summer, with children dancing round the Maypole and stalls and games on the grass on the north side of the church used to be an annual event.

Groups of schoolchildren from both of our schools have regularly come to St Andrews with some of their teachers to do project work.

How much more “opening up” is needed? Is this just an excuse to destroy the interior of our church?

PS: Did you go to the concert on Friday November 11? The Susquehanna Singers Chamber Choir from Pennsylvania, USA performed for us, in church (and without heating) and it was FREE – followed by hot homemade soup and sandwiches in the Ivy Andrew’s Hall.

If you didn’t go, you missed a treat!

Name and address supplied.

Good news

IT’S pleasant to notice two good news items in one week.

Firstly two options to sort our Humber Bridge Tolls, one from Mr Scott and one from North Lincolnshire Council.

Let’s hope it’s finally put to bed (I look forward to visiting Hull).

Secondly the roof solar panel fiasco is removed.

The iniquitous practice by the Government of giving taxpayers money from the treasury to speculators, via the ‘feed in’ tariff has now been halved in value.

Funny how installers have instantly withdrawn their major schemes.

This proves that tax payers monies were needed to fund their profits in the guise of ‘free heating’.

There is of course no such thing, solar or otherwise provided in an economical manner. Hopefully wind farms are next.

Mr Sheffield does not need our money. Perhaps energy companies will now publish our ‘green’ contributions in detail on our energy bills.

Bernard Page

West Street

West Butterwick.

Washing Day

ON MONDAY the copper roared

And dolly tub steamed

The posher pounded its heavy load

Which, dragged to creaking mangle

Suffered its rollered torture

Draped to catch the breeze

And warmed by morning sun

Transformed, renewed, smelling fresh and new

Carried indoors, sprinkled, ironed, folded

Shoved here and there

Ready to face at all again

The end of day routine

Water from copper and tub

Bucketed for a second use

Mangle, tub, and copper cleaned and dried

Stand a while

And feel a little pride.

Colin Ella



Greetings cards

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Head of Fundraising